Short stories and essays by Shaun Costello, as well as excerpts from manuscripts in progress.





Yesterday, September 11, 2012, the eleventh anniversary of the Al Qaida attacks on the World trade center, the US Embassy in Cairo, and our Consulate in Benghazi, Libya came under attack. The American Ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens, and three

Embassy staffers were killed while attempting to evacuate the Consulate in Benghazi. Both attacks were allegedly attributed to the release of the trailer for a film made by an Israeli Jew, living in California, which depicts Islam and the Prophet Muhammad in a negative light.

Muslims find it offensive to depict Muhammad in any fashion, much less in an insulting way. The 2005 publication of 12 caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad in a Danish newspaper triggered death threats in Denmark and riots in many Muslim countries.

In the late 1990’s, after the publication of Salmon Rushdie’s Satanic Verses, the mad Mullahs of Iran sentenced Rushdie to death for his literary efforts, encouraging assassination squads to hunt the author down and take their lethal Islamic vengeance. Of course, none of the Mullahs who were after Rushdie’s blood, had read Rushdie’s book. Soon after the death sentence was handed down, I sat next to Rushdie in an East Hampton restaurant, and must admit to being a bit apprehensive during dinner.

A 14-minute trailer of the movie that sparked yesterday’s protests, posted on the website YouTube in an original English version and another dubbed into Egyptian Arabic, depicts Muhammad as a fraud, a womanizer and a madman in an overtly ridiculing way, showing him having sex and calling for massacres.

The website’s guidelines call for removing videos that include a threat of violence, but not those that only express opinions. YouTube’s practice is not to comment on specific videos.

Sam Bacile, a 56-year-old California real estate developer who identifies himself as an Israeli Jew and who said he produced, directed and wrote the two-hour film, “Innocence of Muslims,” said he had not anticipated such a furious reaction.

Speaking by phone from an undisclosed location, Bacile, who went into hiding Tuesday, remained defiant, saying Islam is a cancer and that he intended his film to be a provocative political statement condemning the religion.

Bacile said he believes the movie will help his native land by exposing Islam’s flaws to the world. “Islam is a cancer, period,” he repeatedly said in a solemn, accented tone.


It should surprise no one that Sam Bacile is an alias. The film’s director turns out to be neither an Israeli nor a Jew. His name is Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, and he is a Coptic Christian. Nakoula remains in hiding, and has assigned the job of promoting the bizarre project to a Mr. Steve Klein, a failed California real estate developer and Vietnam Veteran, whose name has been connected to several organizations that could be described as hate groups. Mr. Klein’s hate-focus seems centered on Islam.

These attacks happened on 9/11, folks. Does anyone really think it was a coincidence? And why weren’t our embassies in the Middle East on heightened alert? Isn’t the CIA supposed to alert the NSA before events like this take place? Was someone asleep at the

switch? If we can’t protect our embassies, we can’t justify having them. The Islamists become more intolerable with every passing day. And it’s not just Islam against the USA, it’s Islam against the world. This would not have happened if Ghadafi and Mubarak were still in power. What does that tell us? It’s horrible to contemplate, but maybe these countries are better off with dictators, who keep the insanity of the Islamists in check. The Arab Spring might just wind up being the beginning of a whole new era of Islamist Madness. Oh, and Iran is building a bomb. Iran the greatest exporter of terrorism on the planet will soon be able to distribute nuclear devices to its world-wide terror cells. Maybe Israel is right. This is all heading in a really bad direction.

Oddly, the press coverage of the Cairo and Benghazi attacks is making no connection to the date on which they occurred. The anti-Semites are claiming that it’s all the fault of the Jews. The extreme pacifists are claiming that retribution for American drone strikes justifies the killing of the Americans, even though those drone attacks are taking place thousands of miles away. The Arab Street is out chanting away, clamoring for death to those who insult Islam. But few, if any, journalists are connecting the date of these attacks to the infamous World Trade Center attacks of eleven years ago. I wonder why.

I watched the video yesterday, and it’s hilarious. No one in his right mind could possibly take this thing seriously. It’s that bad, and makes no sense whatsoever. Mr. Klein, the film’s promoter, is an extremist with a big chip on his shoulder. I disagree with his views, but those views are constitutionally protected. This is a clash of disparately different cultures. The Arab Street has no concept of free speech. They are taught to hate in the Madrasses, and hate they do. This will get worse before it gets better. Libya is an armed camp, unlike Egypt. The present Libyan goverment has been trying to get the rebels to give up the weapons they used to overthrow Ghadafi, but with little success. Until those weapons are confiscated, Libya will remain a tinderbox. Regarding Mr. Klein, hate him if you want to, but he didn’t kill anyone. The Arab Street killed our people. The Arab Street is its own worst enemy. Until the Mullahs stop teaching their children to hate and to kill, the Arab Street will remain its own worst enemy – and ours.,sb=997485,b=facebook


© 2012 Shaun Costello

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One response

  1. Carter Stevens

    Oh, the Protestants hate the Catholics,
    And the Catholics hate the Protestants,
    And the Hindus hate the Muslims,
    And everybody hates the Jews.
    National Brotherhood Week
    Tom Lehrer

    More people have been killed in the name of “God” then have ever been saved. When a nation is built of waring tribes who have been at one another’s throats for longer than our country has existed it is hubris to think we can “give” them change. Lop off the head and “burn the body” of a middle eastern dictator and one just as bad will rise from the ashes. Or worse the religious fanatics will rise up in the vacuum and destroy everyone who doesn’t believe exactly the way they do. The reason nobody is linking this latest incident to 9/11/2001 is because no one is sure it was a planned attact or just “business as usual” in the asshole of the world.

    September 12, 2012 at 2:36 pm

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